Peek behind the employer branding curtain: 5 employer branding experts tips

Blog Start-Up Tips

Recently, employer branding influencers have become more popular on LinkedIn, Instagram and Tiktok.

They give a sneak peek into what happens behind the scenes of candidates’ experience and employer branding, and lead public opinion on some burning issues: work-life balance, recruitment, lay-offs, remote work, and more.

Accompanied by colorful visuals and straight-talking text, these influencers make crucial content accessible to viewers in a fun and light way. 

So, we gathered five well-known employer branding influencers and asked them to share their top insights with us. Let’s get right into it: 

Jess Katz

Leading Global Employer Branding @ Snyk

Jess has been leading employer branding at quickly growing public and private tech companies for the last 4+ years (MongoDB and Snyk). Using a global lens, she has helped companies scale their hiring efforts and brand awareness in target markets around the world.

What is the biggest challenge in employer branding nowadays? 

“The biggest challenge is to create a successful program with limited resources. Especially in today’s unsteady market, companies are extra cautious with their budgets, so you need to get creative. 

For example, instead of outsourcing a copywriter to create a new blog, send your employees a document with questions and ask them to fill it out. Use their insights to quickly create engaging content. Not only does it save you money, but you’re providing an authentic perspective as opposed to a generic, cookie-cutter blog post. Don’t be afraid to get scrappy. 

Another example is to create a fun video using your cellphone and your office as the setting, like I did for ‘Snyk her.”

Tell us about a successful project or strategy that had great results.

“A successful internal strategy that had great results was establishing a close relationship with the C-levels at my company. 

Since C-levels already see the big picture, they understand the importance of hiring quality employees in order to achieve goals and launch products, as well as for the company culture.

When upper management relays this to VPs, it trickles down all the way to the new hires, becoming a clear focus for the entire company. This makes everyone more involved in employer branding content creation. 

By the end, the problem is that you have too much good content to choose from :)”

Lotem Aviv

Talent Acquisition Lead @ Komodor

Lotem Aviv is a veteran recruiter and lecturer that specializes in technical complex positions. Her recruitment and marketing perspectives allow her to empower companies that are hiring to attract more high-quality applicants. Her goal is to combine these two aspects.

What is the biggest challenge in employer branding nowadays? 

“Nowadays, for companies that are having to lay off employees, it can be challenging to present employer branding in a way that does not drive away potential candidates. 

As part of their employer branding efforts, companies should help the employees they had to lay off in whatever ways they can and take full ownership of the situation. Afterall, employer branding and offering employee benefits won’t do much if you treat them disrespectfully during the dismissal process. Word will get around through websites like Glassdoor and word-of-mouth. 

“When facing this challenge, remember that employer branding should be about employees and not about you – don’t be the ‘crying CEO’.”

Tell us about a successful project or strategy that had great results. 

  • “We attend conferences that aren’t directly related to marketing. Why? Because they may be relevant when searching for potential candidates. When there, you can hand out QR codes that lead to the company’s career page, thus increasing exposure to the company.”
  • “We produced interactive videos for our career page. The videos show different employees talking about the hiring process, work culture, and why they chose to work at Komodor. It’s always great for potential employees to hear current employees’ thoughts.”

 The secret to creating an exceptional candidate experience is to use a recruitment mentality that starts from the ground up. You have to get strong advocates like your VP HR, CEO and even Team Leaders that can help you understand what candidates are looking for and adjust accordingly. Even people who didn’t make it to the end of the hiring process still recommend people to apply to Komodor because of how much they enjoyed it.”

Adi Avital Kojokaro

Employer Branding Specialist @ Tipalti

Adi is an Employer Branding Specialist at Tiplati. Over the past 10 years, Adi has utilized both her PR and HR skills at various tech startups. She is a mentor and lecturer, leads the “Employer Branding Israel” online community, and hosts workshops and conferences. 

What is the biggest challenge in employer branding nowadays? 

“As we are all aware, there is currently an atmosphere of uncertainty and increased layoffs. Employer branding is even more important during difficult times like these. Afterall, it should be a marathon, not a sprint.

Companies that are laying off employees must provide a sense of security for the remaining employees. Moreover, it’s crucial to maintain your company’s reputation and show that you go the extra mile for your employees.

Companies that are still growing, like Tipalti should go about recruitment subtly. Be sensitive to the fact that many people lost their jobs. Don’t rub salt in peoples’ wounds. Keep showing the values and benefits of your company, and at the same time, share tips with job-seekers.”

Tell us about a successful project or strategy that had great results.

“One of our goals was to fill our pipeline with relevant QA candidates and ultimately grow the QA team. I was pregnant and had to think of a quick way to achieve this result before going on maternity leave.” 

  • “We co-hosted a meet-up with a QA community. At the event, everyone got to listen to the managers, receive added professional value, see our offices and atmosphere, and mingle with people from our company. This event significantly increased the number of applicants, even six months later.”
  • “The second idea was to create a series of videos interviewing the QA team about what it’s like to be an automation engineer at Tipalti. Not only did the spotlight campaign increase brand awareness and engagement, but it also made the QA team feel appreciated and strengthened their connection to the company.”

Michal Porat

Social Media and Creative Content Manager @ Salesforce

Michal works as a social media and creative content manager at SalesforceIsrael’s R&D center. Michal leads “Outforce,” Salesforce’s LGBTQ+ employee group. She also initiated a podcast for Salesforce called “People Before Code,” in which she interviews Salesforce employees.

What is the biggest challenge in employer branding nowadays? 

“Two years ago, companies attracted candidates using videos featuring celebrities and showing company parties.

Times have changed. Today, what employees want is job security and the opportunity for personal development. They want to be seen and treated like human beings, and herein lies the challenge.

Companies have already been making the shift by focusing more on employee well-being, work-life balance and opportunities for professional development. When you talk about people and company values, ​​it breaks through the noise. There are many topics to talk about – parental benefits and flexibility, volunteering, working from home, and diversity and inclusion. So, make sure to focus on the people at your company and tell their stories.”

Tell us about a successful project or strategy that had great results.

“An idea I’m proud of was to launch our in-house podcast, People Before Code, which gives our Salesforce employees a platform to share their knowledge. 

“On the podcast, we talk about the “human” aspects of working life, as well as practical tools for the modern working world.”

What’s beautiful about this project is that candidates can get a real idea of Salesforce culture from the employees’ perspective. They get a glimpse at the people who might be their colleagues, which can help them decide if Salesforce is the right place for them. It also makes me happy that the world gets to see how amazing our employees are.”

Leora Golomb

Head of Global Employer Branding @ ZipRecruiter

Leora Golomb brings innovative thinking to employer branding at ZipRecruiter. On top of her full-time job, she is also a social entrepreneur who founded FuckUp Nights, where entrepreneurs share stories of their failures. 

What is the biggest challenge in employer branding nowadays? 

“Employer branding doesn’t depend on ‘nowadays.’ Your strategy shouldn’t change based on the market, but rather what is going on at the company, and it shouldn’t be tactical, but strategic. 

One of the challenges is to emphasize what your competitive advantage is. At ZipRecruiter, we introduce candidates to our brilliant employees during interviews and show them the real impact of the company. 

A lot of people think that employer branding is all about intermittent bursts of activity, when in reality, it’s a steady and consistent need. Also, it’s important to check if it’s time to make big moves, or if you need to build infrastructure first. You can launch a billboard campaign, but if your career page doesn’t look good, it won’t get you far.”

Tell us about a successful project or strategy that had great results.

“Our developers created a developer riddle based on the company’s needs that included a virtual experience in our office. Instead of offering prizes, people who solved the riddle went through an accelerated hiring process. 

We advertised it gradually to ensure that we could handle the amount of inquiries, and we published it among a diverse audience first. 

The results were amazing:

  • 15,000 people tried to solve the riddle in 3 days
  • 64 people succeeded 
  • 20 were relevant to start the hiring process
  • Major buzz among developer community
  • Established us as tech authority
  • Participants loved riddle, called it difficult and interesting

There was also internal hype within the company, with employees sharing the riddle on LinkedIn and getting in on the excitement.”

There you have it, folks. We hope these insights from top employer branding influencers will spark your creativity and encourage you to think outside the box.

At SAGE Marketing, our employer branding department is a team of wizards who help startups and tech companies hire top-notch employees, improve work culture, and enhance brand awareness. Curious to hear more? Reach out to us.

Everything you need for B2B marketing: early-stage startups

Blog Start-Up Tips

About 90% of startups fail. And 10% of those failures happen within the first year.

While there are various reasons startups typically collapse, the second most common reason (29% of cases) is a result of lack of cash. Organizations simply run out of money. 

One way to make sure your startup doesn’t fail is by employing the correct marketing tactics for startups that can skyrocket your brand awareness and secure you loyal clients. In this blog post, we break down the essential tools, ideas and resources that can boost any marketing plan for startups, regardless of the budget involved. 

Here is the ultimate checklist to conduct marketing for B2B startups:

1. Define your ideal customer profile (ICP) and target market

An important aspect of a marketing plan for startups is starting off by defining your target market and ICP – the ideal customer that fits your products and services according to their demographics (job title, geos, revenue), pain points and goals. In fact, understanding your ICP is a crucial step prior to beginning any marketing efforts. You never want to throw cash into campaigns or promotions before actually understanding who you’re selling to. 

1. Define your ideal customer profile (ICP) and target market

Once you have this information, you can use HubSpot’s Make My Persona tool to create buyer persona templates that cater to each specific type of customer by emphasizing what makes them unique. 

2. Create concise messaging

Similar to defining your ICP, prior to launching your B2B startup marketing strategy, you need to ensure your brand messaging and positioning is solid. This means translating your products’ services into a clear message, explaining what challenges you’re tackling and how you help solve that problem. 

This sounds quite easy to accomplish, however, you want to approach your messaging carefully. Make sure to stand out from your competitors by avoiding similar wordings and phrases. Craft simple-worded messaging and omit over-fluffy marketing jargon.

2. Create concise messaging

3. Utilize content marketing to become a thought leader in your niche 

By creating a long-term content strategy for content marketing, you can establish your company as a thought leader. This establishes credibility and provides your brand with a lot of exposure. Keep in mind that it is far more effective to focus on thought leadership in a niche as opposed to across an entire industry, which is far more challenging.

When creating your content, you should ask yourself where your audience gets their content, what type of high-quality content can you create, and how often can you create it? In general, social media is a great place to focus your content efforts, and you should ensure that no matter the form of your content, it should provide real value for your target audience and be created consistently. SEO should also be a part of your content strategy. The more you invest in SEO in terms of content building, the higher authority you will gain with time and rank. 

4. Focus only on channels that work best for you

From Facebook and LinkedIn, to YouTube and Reddit – the number of channels for promoting your business continues to grow. The trick is understanding which channels will serve your B2B marketing strategy, and which ones are simply not relevant for your target audience. Most startups are limited with their budget and manpower, which means that promoting on every single channel is merely impossible. Additionally, you don’t want to be spread too thin if you’re working with a small budget and trying to maximize on multiple channels. This is why you should only focus on channels that work best for you. 

4. Focus only on channels that work best for you

source: //

The most common way to understand which channels work best for you is by checking out your competitors – on which channels are they promoting? How is the audience reacting to your competitor’s marketing? Learning from your competitors is a strategic move as you can analyze their product, marketing tactics and sales methods, and seek opportunities in which your marketing tactics can exceed. 

5. Don’t forget about your existing customers

As a startup, you may only have a few dedicated customers, if any at all. And while you’ll want to focus largely on growing your business, you never want to forget about your existing clients. The strongest and best marketing you’ll ever gain will come from your loyal clients, which is why you should also invest in retaining accounts. 

Some productive methods of keeping your clients include building a loyalty program that rewards them for various types of promotions, such as bringing a new client. You can reward your customer with a discount as a result of ‘bringing a friend’. This may also incentivize them to keep promoting your brand in order to enjoy a discounted price. Other ways of keeping your clients happy can be setting up personal account managers. With a direct point of contact, your customer can feel secure and prioritized. 

6. Don’t do everything your competitors do

It’s important to be aware of your competitive landscape. If you haven’t already mapped out your competitors’ messaging, strategies, and niche, it would benefit you to do so. And while for certain things, it’s okay not to “reinvent the wheel” and borrow ideas from your competitors, it’s also important to bring your own perspective and take everything they do with a few grains of salt.

Why? First, they have specified their marketing activities to their exact target audience, which may slightly differ from yours. Second, it’s possible that what they’re doing isn’t working well – you have no way to be sure. And third, every business is different. So while it’s okay to reference what they’re doing, make sure to be creative and unique, and to fit your marketing strategy to your specific target audience. 

No one said launching a startup is easy, it’s certainly hard work. But by employing clever marketing tactics for startups, you can increase your chance of success. 

Firstly, be sure to define your ideal customer profile and target market so that the budget you allocate to marketing doesn’t go to waste. Ensure that your messaging is simple to understand and concise and speaks to your target market’s pains, explaining to them how your solution makes their lives easier. Utilize strategic content marketing to become a thought leader in your niche, and focus your social media efforts onto a few channels that work best for you rather than trying to conquer all of them. 

While you are on the hunt for new customers, make sure that you’re not neglecting your existing customers, as they can provide recommendations for social proof, which is arguably the most important asset a young start-up can have. And lastly, while it is great to remain aware of your competitors’ activities and strategy, be sure not to copy exactly what they do, because they may have a slightly different target audience and what they’re doing might not be the best strategy. 

If you’re an early stage start-up looking to ensure that you’re approaching your marketing properly, this check-list is a great place to start. 

Looking for your marketing partner? Contact us today.